Instagram DM Chatbots for Lead Generation: Tips and Tricks

Chatbot Marketing
A cute chatbot helping it's business navigate the ecommerce storm

The social media landscape is constantly evolving. We've come a long way from those caveman times, when the full potential of platforms like Facebook and Instagram was just being discovered, to what we have now: over one billion monthly active users scroll down Instagram looking for food, news, cats.. you know, the works.

What does that mean for DTC brands? An incredibly vast audience for eCommerce businesses to target and engage with is right there at their fingertips, they only need to know how to get to them.

Now, here's the good news, Instagram offers a variety of features, such as Instagram stories, reels, posts, ads, and live videos, that make it easy for businesses to reach and convert potential customers.

An iPhone screenshot with Instagram notifications

Running a successful Instagram account may appear to be all sunshine and rainbows, but the truth is that it takes a lot of work.

If you want to convert those thirsty Instagram leads into happy paying clients, you'll need more customer care representatives than you can count. Otherwise, you may just have a tiny workforce that is constantly under pressure and exhausted. Good times!

But wait, there's still hope! This blog post will introduce you to the wonders of Instagram automation.

Folks, you read that right—we're talking about chatbots in your Instagram DMs. With the aid of these tiny bots, you may convert those troublesome leads into devoted clients who are eager to make additional purchases.

So buckle up and get ready for a blog that will forever alter your view of your Instagram account.

An iPhone screenshot with an Instagram notification sent from a chatbot

What is lead generation?

Let's be clear about one thing before we discuss how to use Instagram DM chatbots for lead generation: lead generation is like dating, except for businesses.

It is the process of locating someone you are interested in (possible clients) and getting to know them better (cultivating their interest). Similar to dating, the idea is to convert individuals who are interested into paying customers who want to stick around for the long haul.

You must act like a detective in order to develop leads on Instagram. You must identify your prospective clients and learn everything you can about them, including their contact information.

No, it's not necessary for you to stalk them on social media (that would be creepy), but you must persuade them to provide you with their contact information.

It's similar to asking for someone's phone number, but less embarrassing. This is typically accomplished through lead generation ads, where you provide them with an irresistible incentive (such as an awesome e-book or informative whitepaper) in exchange for their contact information.

But why do all that work when Instagram DM chatbots can do it for you?

Why are Instagram DMs and chatbots perfect for this?

What I'm about to tell you will blow your mind. Without spending money on Instagram ads or giving your soul to the Instagram algorithm gods, there are ways to get all that tasty consumer info. Yes, you read that correctly: organic is the way to go, baby!

You can handle all those requests for discounts and freebies like a boss with the help of chatbots.

There's no need for a large team of customer support personnel; just let the bots handle it. And they won't just dish out the items at random.

Like a robot version of a first date, they'll ask for some basic information initially. So instead of asking "What's your favorite color?" they'll request stuff like phone numbers or email addresses.  Smooth move, chatbots, smooth move.

And what do you know? With their automatic form-filling features, even your Facebook page is joining in on the fun.

Instagram may not have caught up yet, but as long as you keep it short and sweet, they'll gladly share their contact information. So brace yourself for more leads than a fishing boat in a storm.

A cute robot fishing on a restless ocean

How can I get my IG profile in on the action?

Now, you must be asking yourself, who do I have to kill to turn a bunch of Instagram posts, into a myriad of Instagram users who give me their information willingly, thereby being able to generate leads by the tons and hit my biggest marketing objective?

No worries, no one has to die tonight. Up next we have a couple of tips and tricks that, I'm sure, you'll find extremely useful when it comes to generating leads on Instagram and, at the right moment, turning them into bank.

Craft a perfect Instagram Bio

It might be obvious to some of you, like Instagram marketing 101, but we still want to mention this just in case.

Be sure your business account looks awesome, perfectly tailored for your target audience for sure, but just professional-looking all around before you run any Instagram ads or incorporate any chatbots.

Next, add a CTA in your BIO, and encourage users to send you a direct message. This direct message will trigger a conversation that they'll get something out of. For example:

An iPhone screenshot showcasing how you can add keywords to your Instagram profile

Next, when your instagram users DM you that keyword, your chatbot will capture their email, and provide the promised value:

Three iPhone screenshots on how email can sync to Klaviyo to trigger a chatbot sequence

Exactly! All that just happened while you had your coffee. You'll thank us later.

All you have to do is connect your Instagram business profile to a tool like Manychat or Chatfuel, and build a basic flow in the back end.

Tip #1: Use all the tools and ways available to start conversations

You don't have to be an Instagram influencer to increase engagement and generate more sales. I mean, if you already are that'll help for sure, but to wow those Instagram users that have seen it all, you need to think of a more clever way of approaching them.

Your chatbot will not only be activated by customer accounts sending direct messages or some kind of keyword, that is one of the ways for sure, but the beautiful thing about our chatbot friends is that they are versatile and, since chatbots live inside your computer, they will be there every single time someone mentions your brand or checks out your Instagram ads.

You could trigger Instagram conversations every time your followers:

A diagram with information on all the ways an Instagram chatbot can interact with users

And believe us, being fast is vital. Users keep on scrolling and forget all about your offer if you don't reply at once, and they'll be surprised to see that your chatbot (and by extension, your brand) pays so much attention to every interaction.

Comments on IG Live videos, posts, and reels.

Live. Videos. Are. Awesome. They're a great tool to generate leads on Instagram, since you can interact directly with current followers and potential new followers with interesting and fun content that is being created on the spot with them right there.

They feel like a live audience and, if you include a fun dynamic, like saying "send me a message with this keyword" and when they do, they get info, awesome discounts, and other goodies, you'll have them in your pocket.

"But how can I juggle live videos AND DMs at the same time?" You haven't been paying attention, have you?

Two words: chat-bot. You take care of feeding the keyword to your expectators and the chatbot will do the rest, including gathering all those delicious contact details for you to use later.

Three iPhone screenshots showcasing how a chatbot can interact with users on Instagram Live videos

This is what chabots can do with comments on posts and Instagram reels as well. You can set up automatic replies to those comments and, in your post descriptions you can be very creative.

Ask them to tag a friend, or comment a specific emoji depending on the product they're interested in, that way not only are you generating leads but you're already learning more about they're interests, likes, and dislikes.

Four iPhone screenshots showcasing the steps the chatbot can take with users

Direct Messages.

It's in the title right? DMs are your best bet to get your chatbot to generate high-quality leads on Instagram. Some obvious ways are encouraging people to send you a DM with a call to action, "send us this and get this" through an Instagram story or ad, and let your chatbot do the rest.

However, DMs are becoming the default way a lot of Instagram users are talking to their favorite brands.

They want their questions answered, they're looking for product recommendations or just looking for someone to chat with.

So, if you're feeling fancy and want to give your chatbot some more brain power, you can employ AI to make it smarter than your regular bot.

But let's face it, most of us lack the necessary tech skills. Fortunately, you can build a conditional logic chatbot that will do wonders for promoting your company with a simpler software like ManyChat.

Tip #2: Move your Instagram followers away from Meta's algorithm and onto your owned lists

If you already have a working email lead nurturing process, you can sync your Instagram DMs to your email service provider for a seamless experience across channels.

Your chatbot will collect emails inside your Instagram DMs, by offering value in exchange (like a product recommendation, discount, or free ebook).

It will then sync that email to your email service provider and trigger a sequence a few days later after it has checked and confirmed that user has not used the coupon they were given, for example.

The foundation of Instagram DM marketing is starting conversations that your users perceive as valuable, collecting their contact information, like email addresses, and trying to close a sale.

If you're feeling brave, ask for the phone number. It's like trying to get someone's phone number in a packed nightclub: it can work, but it can also backfire if you're not smooth enough.

Nonetheless, it's absolutely worth a shot if you're selling expensive goods or targeting Generation Z!

Tip #3: Personalization for the win

Now that you've talked up your potential consumers and made them feel special, it's time to close the deal. What is the best way to accomplish it without seeming like a pushy salesperson?

Yeah, personalization is key, my friend. Don't be the person that mass-mails sales pitches to everyone on their contact list. That is immediately obvious to everyone.

Have your chatbot provide targeted offers and customized product recommendations to really amaze your potential consumers.

Make sure to include pertinent questions, and then use the users' responses to generate offers that are specifically catered to their needs.

Simply asking questions inside your automated dialogues can increase conversions by up to 10 times. That is comparable to winning the lottery minus the uncomfortable press conference and humongous check.

Tip #4: Keep in touch

The customer journey does not end when a transaction is closed; it is just the beginning. It is similar to going on a first date in that it is a nice beginning, but far more work needs to be done.

Fortunately, DM automation can help you stay in touch with your consumers, establish loyalty, and even cross-sell or upsell.

The newest cool kids on the block are Instagram's DM lists. They function similarly to email lists with a platform twist. When users opt-in to receive promotional content from your page, your chatbot can flash sales updates, new product launches, quizzes, etc.

You can collect a permission like this, then broadcast to your list daily for six months. And after six months, Meta follows up automatically on that user to ask them if they want to renew for another six months.

An iPhone screenshot with an Instagram notification from a chatbot

So, folks, keep the conversation going. DM lists allow you to stay in touch with your consumers for as long as they continue to opt-in, just like a true friend (or stalker).

The Verdict: are IG chatbots the future of Instagram lead generation?

Are Instagram DM chatbots the future of DTC marketing? They are both the present and the future!

For direct-to-consumer brands, Instagram is a goldmine of potential customers, but turning those leads into actual sales can be challenging. Chatbots can help with that by simplifying the lead generation process.

With the help of Instagram DM chatbots, businesses can quickly and easily find and cultivate new customers, gather their contact information, and convert them to paying clients.

It's like having your own private lead generation army and sales machine, just without the marching and shouting.

So, if you're not employing chatbots for Instagram marketing, you're missing out. Get started right away and see your leads and sales soar! 

And hey, if you want more chatbot wisdom, give us a follow on Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube. We won't disappoint!

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